We visited Suizenji gardens which had ponds, stepping stones, cherry blossoms, herons and a mini Mount Fuji. We also visited the castle, a vast multi-level structure which has been partly rebuilt and provided a good couple of hours' wandering around gazing at pretty blossom trees and enormous stone walls. We were also going to visit Mt Aso but it's currently spewing poisonous gases so you can't go near the crater. However, from the top of the castle the volcano's activity was clear to see - it was quite a cloudy day anyway but it was definitely more grey and hazy in the eastern direction towards Aso.
|Best sushi ever
The following night we went to a barbecue restaurant - following the delicious steaks we had in Hamamatsu, we were up for more grilled meat.
Raw horse sashimi (basashi) is a local speciality - fish isn't the only thing the Japanese like to eat uncooked. Dgym was a bit bothered by this and tried to communicate that we'd really prefer a grill. This was either refused, or not understood because we didn't get one. And so we started on our our meal of cold dead horseflesh which (along with some other, warmer, things) was very nice. I'd like to say this has completely ruined English raw horsemeat for me but I'll leave you to insert your own Tesco lasagne joke here.
Most of the adult cats seemed a bit disinterested (i.e. they were cats) but we did spend a good portion of our time there with a tiny five week old black kitten who seemed intent on mauling my trouser pocket to death.